Uncertainty and the Disappearance of International Credit
NBER Working Paper No. 7389
We show that increased uncertainty about the size of an emerging market's external debt has a nonlinear and potentially large adverse effect on the supply of international credit offered to them. We also show that if international creditors are first- order risk averse, attaching greater weight to utility derived from bad outcomes than from good ones, a moderate increase in uncertainty about debt overhang or about other relevant factors affecting repayment prospects-- can cause the supply of credit to dry up completely. We therefore offer one possible explanation for why emerging markets may find themselves suddenly cut off from international capital markets.